Through civil society advocacy, the World Bank has come to recognize the importance of transparency and civil society engagement in the development of the extractive industries (EI).
A recent assessment by the Bank Information Center (BIC) and Global Witness (2008) found that the World Bank Group is involved in promoting EI transparency in one form or another in over 65% of resource-rich countries where the Bank is engaged. Much of this Bank-supported transparency is through the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).
An important part of the EITI process is its support and requirement of civil society participation throughout the process of EI revenue disclosure. However, the same assessment also found that the World Bank does not appear to be assessing the adequacy of civil society engagement incorporated by governments or private sector projects receiving World Bank assistance.
Moreover, sessions focusing on civil society participation at the World Bank‟s May 2009 EITI week, demonstrated that many questions exist surrounding the extent, quality, and funding of civil society participation in the EITI process, and specifically, the role of the World Bank.
In hopes of shedding more light and attention on this issue, in 2009 BIC conducted a survey of civil society participation in the EITI. The survey included contributions from civil society organizations (CSOs) and other individuals involved in the process in EITI candidate countries. The survey questions were intended to address important aspects of CSO participation, including: inclusiveness, transparency, independence, and accountability. As such, the survey was divided into four main sections:
- scope of CSO involvement
- independence of CSO participation
- quality of CSO participation
- role of the World Bank
The survey was distributed in English, Russian, French, Spanish, and Arabic through the Publish What You Pay (PWYP) network mainly to PWYP members, but also to a few groups and individuals outside of the coalition. A copy of the original survey questions is attached at the end of the document.
February 2010 by Heike Mainhardt-Gibbs